“I think Frankfurt is for us today number one, but will become number two. We’ve decided to move our hub--we’re maybe a bit ahead of the market, we already had our European hub in Frankfurt--but for strategic considerations, we’ve decided to move it to Luxembourg. And I think Luxembourg and Frankfurt will the backbone of our strategy, with the third location continuing to be London. You need to keep that option healthy.”
Indeed, Collardi remained bullish on the UK, saying:
“We’re not shifting resources out [of London], maybe unlike some others, but we’re also not necessarily making grand plans for expansion other than our same organic growth strategy. The good news for Julius Baer is maybe we’ve been a bit underinvested in the UK in the past. We still have quite a bit of room to grow in the years to come.”
“There is marketshare to grab from people who are retracting.”
Earlier in the interview on Monday, Collardi was asked how difficult it would be for the UK to win back the financial sector jobs that are leaving London. The bank CEO responded:
“Frankly nearly impossible. It will take a decade, if at all, and a perfect constellation for these jobs to move again. Because moving jobs is not only about moving physical tasks. It’s about moving people, it’s about committing investments, it’s infrastructure, and I think in any reasonable company, you have to do that over a planning cycle, so I don’t think these jobs are going to go back any time soon.”
Julius Baer is Switzerland’s third largest bank. Collardi was speaking to the business news channel about the bank’s first half of the year earnings. Assets under management rose 6% compared to the same period the previous year, the firm reported.